How Are You Avoiding Drama This Season? 4 Tips to Stay Sane and Keep the Zen
So today, I want to talk about drama. Or, more accurately, how to avoid it. A few posts ago, I mentioned that this time of the year is basically my favorite. Not because of the temperature (I could definitely take that or leave it) but because of excitement of the holidays period. Christmas music, shopping for presents, spending time with loved ones on Thanksgiving. For me, November and December kind of meld together into one big super-month full of fun stuff to basically distract me from my job every day.For some others though, this season is full of stress and drama. Maybe you're dreading making that ten hour drive with three kids and two dogs to see family or fighting the crowds on Black Friday for the 65" your husband and/or kids are dying to have. Or maybe you're SO is currently deployed and you'll be spending the holidays without them. Admittedly, these things all suck. But they don't have to completely ruin the next few months. I'd like to share a few of my favorite tips for avoiding drama, and you know, saving it for your mama (I couldn't resist!)
Embrace The Crazy
I know this seems counter-intuitive, but, honestly, some things are just out of your control. Take a quick survey of everything that's currently stressing you out. I'll bet 90% of those things are completely outside your control. So acknowledge the stress and then try to move on. Maybe engage in an activity that relaxes and calms you (for me it's reading and working on this blog). And try to focus on the positive things that are happening in your life. As for the crap you can control, do something about it. Maybe this is the year you DON'T stand in line outside of Best Buy in the early hours Friday morning. I've read that Cyber Monday sales are typically just as good anyway.
Lean On Your Friends/ Family
This goes especially for you if your SO will be deployed during the next few months. Spend time with friends and family who understand what you're going through (and if they don't, hopefully they're good at offering a shoulder to cry on). And if it's your family that's stressing you out? I suppose the easy answer is to just not go. But I'd say go, drink the eggnog, eat the free food, and be graceful. Remember, it's a few days out of your entire year and then you can resume your normal life. And when your Aunt Annie asks for the third time why your SO was not allowed to come back for the holidays, take a deep breath, paste a smile on your face, and give a vague answer. And then spike your eggnog with something extra (Kidding! Sort of...)
Take "YOU" Time
This is a given during any other time of the year, but it's even more imperative during the holidays. You must take time out for yourself even if it's 30 minutes at Starbucks enjoying a coffee or a little online window shopping (another of my favorites, I basically have my whole winter wardrobe planned out). During a time that tends to shift much of your focus towards others (your mom wants to know what dish you're contributing for Thanksgiving Dinner, you STILL haven't finished Christmas shopping, you're volunteering to help with the church play, etc.) it really helps to spend some time every day being completely focused on doing what you want to do. I think I've mentioned this before and I feel it bears repeating; this advice is especially important if your a "milspouse" or significant other. We spend so much time bowing to the needs of the Army (insert whatever branch you or your SO serves here) and it's nice (and healthy!) to attend to our own needs when we can.
For God's Sake, Avoid the Facebook Groups
I read an interesting post the other day about the things we as spouses/ significant others need to "get over". I have to say, it was dead on. I would only add these Facebook groups. Don't get me wrong, they're an awesome source of information and support. I'm a member of several for Fort Stewart alone. But you know how when someone posts and you can almost tell they're having a bad day? And then some well-meaning person responds and then all of sudden, there's an out-and-out fight laid out for everyone else's entertainment (or irritation). I always wonder what's going in those people's lives to make them snap on social media like that. Okay, yes it's possible, they're just miserable human beings who like to cyber-bully others for sport. But couldn't it be that they're just having a sucky day and whatever comment is was ended up being the last straw? For me, it's safe to say Facebook groups are not where you should go to vent or fuss. The odds are against you that someone will comment something that ends up upsetting you even more and then you're right back where you started. Need to rage for a bit? Why not do so with the people in your life who actually know you and care about you. I guarantee it makes for much better results. And if you happen to be a commenter on one of these crazy posts? Perhaps a few kind words of encouragement are in order. Or you know, you can do what the old adage dictates and say nothing at all.
What are some of your tips for avoiding stress during the holidays? Tell me below!
Where to live
What to do
Where to eat